Self Leadership Will Help You Achieve Your Goals

In business and in your life, the importance of "self leadership" taking ownership of your current circumstance, and taking the necessary steps to move forward toward a positive and more rewarding outcome is critical to your success. We should all have personal, professional, relationship, and even recreational goals. Goals are benchmarks to work towards. They are tangible evidence of our hard work and dedication. 

We spend our lives achieving, and often failing to achieve, our goals, whether we know it, or not. Walt Disney said, “A person should set his goals as early as he can and devote all his energy and talent to getting there. With enough effort, he may achieve it. Or he may find something that is even more rewarding. But in the end, no matter what the outcome, he will know he has been alive.” 

That quote is so true because without setting some measurable point to work towards, we spend our days, and our lives, meandering from one circumstance to another, not knowing whether we are progressing or retreating.

It's important to provide some clear and concise steps on how to systematically get from point A to point B. Regardless of your situation, adopting a "self leadership" approach, will prove highly beneficial as you work to achieve your goals. Upfront planning and breaking things down into clear, concise, and easy to understand steps will insure your success.

Improve Your Life One Step At A Time:

Determine The Outcome - In order to get to where you want to go, you need to have a clear vision of what the ultimate outcome is that you desire. Otherwise, how will you ever be able to measure your success? Take time to be alone with your thoughts for the sole purpose of deciding what it is that you truly want. Once you have the outcome determined clearly in your mind - write it down. Be sure to keep your written goal in a place where you will see it and be reminded of it on a regular basis. The written goal should be stated in the present tense for your desired outcome.
Broad Outline - Once you know your outcome, it's time to create a broad outline of what it's going to take to achieve your goal. Whether the goal is small or large, it will most likely require you to take action in more than one area. The outline may end up becoming similar to a table of Contents if the outcome was to write a book. Before even writing the first word, we can think through the various chapters of the book that we plan to write. By pre-planning in an outline format, you are in effect creating a skeleton road map to success. The details to you plan will come soon, but for now we just need a broad outline. Keep in mind that you can edit the outline as you go progress. Fine-tuning along the way is important as you learn more about what will be required to achieve your final outcome. Be flexible on this point and watch your road map evolve!
Identify Projects - With a basic outline in hand, the next step requires you to break down each bullet point, or chapter, into projects. Depending on the complexity of your outcome, you may have several projects to complete. For instance, in writing a book, projects might include researching sources; preparing questions; conducting interviews; traveling for background data; research on the topics of marketing, publishing, scheduling time each day to write, etc. Be prepared to add projects to your list as you progress. While it may time longer to achieve your goal than you originally intended, the main point to remember is that you are moving closer to the end result. Keep pressing forward.
List Tasks - This next step is critical. Listing specific tasks required in order to complete each project can be time consuming, but it is well worth your time and effort. Each task will take you one step closer to realizing your ultimate outcome. Your list of tasks will likely be long. Some will be easy to complete, others more difficult. Don't let the size of your list overwhelm you. You will not be attempting to complete all tasks at once. You will, however, need to complete the tasks one by one, taking one step after another. Before you know it the list of tasks will be achieved and every related project will be accomplished!

Add Time-Lines - Depending on your situation, you may need to attach specific time-lines to each project and associated task. If your desired outcome must occur by a specific date, then you must ensure your success by adding specific time-lines to each task and project. If you do not have a specific end date by which you much complete your goal, adding time-lines may not be necessary. The choice is yours.

Take Action Daily - At the very least you are encouraged to do "something" each day (take at least one simple action) toward the realization of your goal. Over time, one year for example, you will be amazed at how much progress you will have made toward achieving your ultimate outcome. Consistent little steps lead to big results!
Stay On Task - At times you may get discouraged because you've become sidetracked. Perhaps a family emergency, work related responsibilities or other personal issues have taken priority and you've not made the progress you intended. Let's face it, LIFE HAPPENS! Here is where you simply say to yourself - "So What!" Don't let it get you down. Instead, just pick back up where you left off. No harm, no foul. Just begin working your task list. Continue to work toward the completion of your projects. Don't waste time beating yourself up over any delays. Re-engage and keep pushing forward.
Look Back to See Forward - From time to time, take a minute to review the progress you've made. Take time out to celebrate the little wins achieved along the way! Remind yourself of where you would be if you had not taken any action at all toward your goal - then compare it to where you are now. Perhaps you have not yet fully realized your goal, but you are no doubt well on your way to victory. Give yourself a well deserved pat on the back for a job well done. Get going on those tasks and projects, and don't stop putting one step in front of the other until you have achieving your ultimate outcome.

Out of all the above steps, the single most important step is Taking Action Daily! By taking action today toward your goals, you could be on your way to creating the roadmap to the life you want. You can accomplish things you once thought were impossible.
"Whoever wants to reach a distant goal must take small steps."
- Helmut Schmidt
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